Are you depriving yourself?

Recently I posted a photo on my Instagram page about changing the way we think about our nutrition.  It had to do with adjusting our thinking from one of deprivation to one of adding things into our diet.  I thought I would explain a little more deeply here.

It is often said that the most efficient way to make sure that the general public knows about something is for the government to ban it.  The same is true (if slightly stretching the comparison) about our nutrition.  If you want to ensure you have a craving for something, try thinking about not eating it for a while.

This is one of the problems with most diets - they focus on the removal of certain foods.  A few examples are - low carb, no sugar diet, low fat diets, no white bread/rice/pasta.  These all focus on removal of things that people would normally eat.  Which means of course that they are the things that are most on our minds when we are hungry.

There's not normally anything magical about these diets in how they are designed.  They focus on reduction of overall calories in order to put us in a caloric deficit - a fancy way of saying we eat less calories than we burn through exercise/daily life.  They just approach it from different places.

Instead of taking the deprivation mindset, I am more in favour of an addition mindset.  How can we add things into our nutrition plan/diet in order to help our bodies get the nutrients that we need to perform at our peak?

One thing that I encourage clients to look at is the colour of their normal meal.  Is it all brown as in the case with a meal of fish and chips?  How about adding a salad to the fish instead of the chips? Add in green (lettuce), red (tomato), orange (carrot) and yellow (capsicum).  You can pile that plate as high as it can take it, and there will most likely still be less calories than a plate of chips.  

You would also be adding in different texture to a somewhat chewy meal too.  Texture helps keep food interesting and gives us different sensations as we eat.  Include nuts, raw veges, soups, stews, baked/barbecued vegetables and meats to your diet and see if it makes a difference in how you prefer to eat.

The main point is to refocus your thinking about food from one of deprivation to one of addition.  If you stop thinking about what you can't eat and focus on what you can add to your diet, it could make sticking to it a whole lot easier.  Give it a try and let me know how you get on.


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